Intellectual property in the era of Web-3. DRM, NDA, and Smart Contracts
Protecting intellectual property in the Web-3 world is like playing at a new level. With all the magic of technology and endless possibilities, we need to improve our protections by adapting old methods like copyright and patents to this new digital platform.
The possibilities of Web-3 are amazing, from decentralized intellectual property marketplaces where creators meet their consumers directly to creating immutable records of IP ownership that simplify rights protection. This is just the tip of the iceberg of what is possible in Web-3.
But what are the challenges?
Web-3 is in a digital space without geographical boundaries. How do you determine jurisdiction when your content can be accessed anywhere in the world, regardless of where you live or create the content? According to the legislation of which country will such a dispute be resolved? This is where new technologies and tools come to the rescue.
Digital Rights Management (DRM) technologies provide rights holders with the means to ensure their works' confidentiality, integrity, and availability in the digital environment.
DRM technologies protect various types of content, from music to software. Their goal is to limit digital content's unauthorized use and distribution by giving rights holders control over its use.
Non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) are another tool for protecting intellectual property online. NDAs are most often used when dealing with people who have access to your intellectual property. They define what information is confidential, how long the agreement lasts, the parties' obligations, and liability for violations.
For example, if you're collaborating with a partner or development team on a new project, you may require an NDA to be signed. This sets a clear framework for what information can and cannot be shared.
Smart contracts are one of the most promising technologies for protecting intellectual property in Web-3. These are computer programs that are automatically implemented if the terms of the contract are met. For example, they can automatically make payments from consumers to content creators when that content is used. This ensures instant execution and eliminates the need for middlemen (such as banks or accountants) who typically collect fees.
Considering all the advantages of Web-3 technology, it is essential to remember that its power lies not only in the technology but also in the people who use it. Smart contracts, DRM, NDA, and other protection mechanisms are just tools that are effective only if they are used effectively. This task is left to the lawyers who shape the terms of smart contracts, develop rules for DRM, and draft non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). The role of specialists becomes essential in the context of the immutability of smart contracts: if the contract is launched, its terms cannot be changed. Therefore, these terms must be clearly formulated and meet the parties' interests.
The combination of Web-3 and intellectual property is at the stage of active development and search for optimal solutions. This process opens up new horizons for the protection and commercialization of IP. But there is one "but". The digital space, which has no borders, not only gives us unlimited opportunities but also creates challenges.